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Why my American Express Gold Card is fast gaining walletshare!?

When American Express, on my American Express Kingfisher First Credit Card decided to compulsorily sweep all my Membership Rewards points onto my King Club account every month as of May 2011, I was not very impressed with them. This because the original contract between us was about earning Membership Reward points, and I could choose to use them on any other reward as well at that point of time. I used to time my sweep to Kingfisher’s program with a bonus, so that I could earn the few extra miles. To placate me, American Express offered to issue me the newly relaunched Gold Charge Card, which usually comes free for the first year from the Amex stable. Their line was,…

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10 Weeks to OneWorld MegaDo: Preparing for Seat 33A!

I just strolled over to MegaDo.com to check how was I doing on seat 33A.  I had a whale of a time booking up my seat a couple of weeks back when I had to cancel an evening out to be in front of the computer when the booking opened up. I thought I’d plan this trip with the BoardingArea peeps and readers along going forward. Here is how it looks like so far! Booking seats on the Charter AAOWMD – Check It was 10 AM morning in the US ( I forget the time zone!), and 9 PM or so in Delhi, where I was trying to book up. Add to it the pressures of visiting friends and relatives…

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Flying Kingfisher: First impressions amongst the ongoing turmoil

  Last weekend I embarked on a BOM-DEL-BOM roundtrip on Kingfisher Airlines after a very long time. I explained the reasoning behind booking Kingfisher in my earlier post on that topic. I must admit I shuddered when the flight cancellations became a flood from a trickle around the time I was all set to return on DEL-BOM, considering I had a very important meeting the next morning, but I decided to play along. I must have been crazy to do that, but it all worked out in the end. The completion of this trip made me believe that miracles do happen, and a lot of them while at it. When I arrived at the airport, I was surprised to see…

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Cathay launches First Class product in India

Close on the heels of Jet Airways putting their B777 on the Mumbai-Hong Kong route and putting out gourmet service on the plane in September 2011, Cathay followed suit to launch their First Class on their flights from Mumbai and Delhi to Hong Kong. With effect from 31 Oct 2011, Cathay Pacific has put on their 747-400s on this route, which has 9 First Class suites on the main deck of the plane. With the famous Cathay service, a very big 81 inch pitch for the FC enclosure, and Cathay’s famous lounges from HK, you should have a great experience. Also, on board is the new Gourmet menu for Cathay First and Business Class customers which is valid from Nov…

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The rumors are true: Jet Airways is the best airline in India

This is just in via a new survey conducted by one of India’s biggest newspaper ‘Hindustan Times’ on customer satisfaction with airlines and Airports in India. The results have some surprises but here they go: Airlines Jet Airways (up 1 rank as compared to 2009) Kingfisher (drops 1 rank as compared to 2009) Indigo (up 1 rank as compared to 2009) Kingfisher Red (up 2 ranks as compared to 2009) Jet Lite (up 2 ranks as compared to 2009) Spice Jet (down 3 ranks as compared to 2009) Go Air (down 2 ranks as compared to 2009) Indian (same as 2008) Airports Bengaluru Delhi T3 Delhi T1 Chennai Hyderabad Ahmedabad Mumbai Indore Jaipur Lucknow The story is here. What is…

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Red Alert: Kingfisher plans to slice away 31 flights daily till Nov 19

Update as of 10 Nov 2011: It turns out that Kingfisher is cancelling upto 50 flights a day instead of the earlier announced 31. The DGCA has issued a notice to the airline to clarify why it is cancelling flights and what is it doing to take care of the passengers stranded because of its acts. This should be some justice to the flyers booked on those Kingfisher flights which got cancelled. —- Gulp! Hate to bring the bad news but I was just going through my Twitter timeline for @Livefromalounge where I spotted a couple of rants about Kingfisher Airlines. It is well-known that the airline is cancelling flights left-right-center with a brutal axe that only the ‘Guests’ know…

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Pegasus to take to the air in Indian skies shortly…

Amidst the bloodbath that Indian aviation has become, with almost all the major carriers losing money being up in the air, there is another airline queuing up for launch shortly. This one is called Air Pegasus, and it intends to be a regional Low Cost Carrier, only operating in South India, connecting Bangalore, Chennai, Coimbatore, Tiruchchirappalli, Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram, Hyderabad, Hubli, Mangalore and Goa sectors. According to a story that broke on the Indian Express, the Government of India has already sanctioned to give away a No Objection Certificate to the airline operator, and subsequently, the airline will need to get its aircraft in place. After putting all the processes in place, the airline needs to go for a formal approval…

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Unlimited flying on Air India with the new Pass!

Air India has been in the market with an unlimited flying pass for the past few months, and I thought I’d cover it now that the validity of the product was extended. For people who anticipate a lot of travel in India in a burst of 15 days, this is the product they should gun for. The product comes in two variants: The Silver Pass allows for Economy class travel for INR 35,000 (700 USD) The Platinum Pass allows for Business class travel for INR 75,000 (1,500 USD) The 15-days period starts from the day the first trip is made, and one can move across the 66 destinations of the airline inside India. This amount includes the taxes and fees…

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Why I stepped on a Kingfisher plane yesterday!

So I got on a Kingfisher Airlines plane for the first time in lets say 3-4 years yesterday evening, unless you count the 45 minute GOI-BOM flight I took on Kingfisher Red last year in August. The reasons I’ve abstained from Flying Kingfisher have been many. Here are a few: They are flashy! I am not just referring to their choice of Red as their color, but all the flying models, personally chosen by the CEO bit and all their eagerness to please appeared over the top. I felt hurt when the owner went all out to get Air Deccan down to their knees and bought them out with their flanking strategy. And yes, I am an M&A guy myself,…

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Get 100$ off your next flight with the IHG ‘Gotta Get 100’ promotion!

IHG released a Black Friday promotion this past week via its Twitter handle @IHG_Deals. Using this, you could get a 100$ Flight Credit on any US RT  flight after completing a weekend stay in any IHG brand hotel. You could get upto 3 flight credits in this manner till April 29, 2012. The promotion entails signing up. After registering, you need to have a consecutive 2 night stay (weekends only) at a single IHG brand property. After the stay, you have to send your Stay Folio via fax, email or snail mail to the travel agent who is enlisted for this promotion (ATG). They will validate your stay and get you a PIN for getting your $100 off, which again,…

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If you can get a Politician size sleeper suit, you definitely can accrue miles on NWA still!

Last week I pointed out an unexplained situation on the Kingfisher Airlines KingClub website, which mentioned Politician size sleeper suits. I figure no one had an answer to what these mean, because no one has still told me what size this means. However, looks like this is one airline which loves to also carry on traditions of the past. I just noticed while pricing a ticket, that you could still accrue miles on the NWA program, although the airline itself is long painted in Delta colors as of 2008.   I’d love to poke more fun on the Kingfisher website, but what they really need to do is check their website for copy errors one time, for good, and thoroughly.…

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